The Faces of Finland

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Availability : August 21-29, 2020

The Faces of Finland

An Art & Design Tour

Highlights Include:

  • Time to explore Finland’s largest cities
  • Museums of History, Art & Design
  • Tampere’s large, indoor Market Hall 
  • Walking Dinner Tour in Porvoo
  • Hosted by Borton Overseas Scandinavia Specialist Teemu Karhapää and Max Stevenson of Norway House

Photo: Max Stevenson

Tour Details

Price: $4,289 per person | Single supplement $528

Price includes transatlantic airfare from Minneapolis/St. Paul (please inquire for pricing from your US departure city)

Early Booking Discount: Save $150 per person when deposited by April 15, 2020

9 days

Tour Dates:
August 21 – 29, 2020

Join Borton Overseas on this Signature Journey, led by Scandinavia Specialist Teemu Karhapää, and hosted by Max Stevenson, Director of Exhibitions & Programming at Norway House, to see Finland’s multi-faceted culture and experience the art, design, and architecture that Finland has to offer.

Having lived in Finland, Max Stevenson has a special place in his heart for a lot of the items on this tour. Rooted in his childhood interest in both his Finnish and Norwegian ancestry, Max grew up exposed to many aspects of his heritage — including frequent saunas — before exploring Finland as an exchange student living in southwest Finland in 2007-08. It was during his time there that he discovered famous architect and designer, Alvar Aalto, who he references as one of the important figures to reinforce his passion for Nordic arts and culture. After living abroad, Max studied at St. Olaf College where he received his Bachelor of Art in Studio Art in 2012 and focused his artistic passions on the study of glassblowing, printmaking, and Nordic literature and film.

This is a Borton Overseas Signature Journey – a premier, small-group tour hosted by our Destination Specialists.

Friday, August 21Departure from US

Borton Overseas Scandinavia Specialist Teemu Karhapää will accompany the group on its departure from Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport on Icelandair at 7:20 p.m. Borton Overseas can assist with arrangements for departures from other US locations – please inquire!

Saturday, August 22Arrive Helsinki, Finland | Meals: D

After a layover in Iceland, we will land in Helsinki at 1:55 p.m. Upon arrival, we will transfer by bus from the airport to the city center, with a brief tour of the city along the way. Among the sights you’ll see are the Helsinki Cathedral, Senate Square, and Oodi Library, which was chosen as the best new public library in the world in 2019. After having some time to freshen up and acclimate, we will meet for a welcome dinner at the hotel. Overnight at Hotel St. George

Sunday, August 23Helsinki | Meals: B

This morning we’ll go on a three-hour walking tour of the city with our host, Max Stevenson. Included in the walking tour will be sites like Artek flagship store, Ateneum Art Museum, Design Museum, Kamppi Chapel of Silence, Temppeliaukio Church, Helsinki Music Center, and more. The remainder of the day is at leisure to explore. Since we will be using the Helsinki card during the walking tour, you will have this at your disposal. The Helsinki Card includes a variety of benefits that will help you to discover and experience Helsinki, as well as save money, time, and energy during your visit. The card allows free or reduced entry into Helsinki’s top attractions, sightseeing tours by bus and boat, unlimited travel on public transport and ferry to/from Suomenlinna Sea Fortress, plus other offers. Overnight at Hotel St. George

Monday, August 24Optional Excursions| Meals: B

Today is at your leisure or book one of the below optional excursions. Overnight at Hotel St. George

Optional Tours Today:

Helsinki Card Extension | Duration: Valid for 24 hours, $15 per person
Extend the use of your included Helsinki Card by 24 hours.
Helsinki Hop/On Hop Off | Duration: Valid for 24 hours, $36 per person
The Hop On/Hop Off tour bus will stop at the highlights, allowing passengers to enjoy the sights at their own pace, and hop back on to go to the next sight.
Helsinki Panorama Sightseeing | Duration: 1.75 hours, $38 per person
This popular sightseeing tour shows you the most important sights, giving you an excellent view of Helsinki’s past and present. The tour takes you to the most interesting parts of Helsinki, such as City Hall, the Parliament buildings, Finlandia Hall, and the Opera House. The bus stops at the Temppeliaukio Church (Rock Church) or at the Sibelius Monument (if the church is closed) for 20 minutes. The tour ends near the Esplanade Park. The tour includes sound effects and commentary in 10 languages with headphones on a double-decker bus. The tour is FREE with Helsinki Card!
Helsinki Grand Tour | Duration: 3.25 hours, $55 per person
The tour is a combination of Helsinki Panorama Sightseeing by bus and the Beautiful Canal Route boat sightseeing.
See Helsinki and its surrounding areas by land, sitting in a comfortable, air-conditioned coach and listening in your own language. Panorama Sightseeing includes sound effects and commentary in 10 languages with headphones. The Panorama bus stops, if possible, at the Temppeliaukio Church (Rock Church) or at the Sibelius Monument (if the church is closed). During the boat sightseeing tour you will get to see the most beautiful shorelines in Helsinki and many fabulous sights. Along the way you will also hear about Helsinki’s fascinating history through loudspeakers in 4 languages (Finnish, English, German, and Russian). The ships’ cafes offer beverages, delicious Finnish pastries and snacks.

Tuesday, August 25Helsinki – Turku | Meals: B L D

Today we will leave Helsinki by bus to Turku, following the King’s Road. Our first stop along the way will be Ragvald’s Farm Museum, where their mission is to nurture an understanding of rural heritage. Having been a working farm since 1813, it is the perfect place to experience this! After Ragvald’s farm we will drive about 45 minutes to Svartå Slott, where we will have a guided tour and enjoy lunch. Svartå Slott has 200 years of history and on the tour we will see the restored house and hear about the famous parquet floors, furniture, ownership history, and even a ghost story or two if you’d like! After lunch we will continue west to Fiskars, making a brief stop at Fiskars Village to see their summer exhibit before ending the day in Turku. Dinner will be provided at our hotel this evening. Overnight at Scandic Plaza

Wednesday, August 26Time in Turku | Meals: B

This morning Max will host us on a walking tour of the city. Having lived near Turku, Max has a special place in his heart for this area. On the walking tour we will see Turku Market Hall, Turku Cathedral, Sibelius Museum, and on the way back you can choose to purchase lunch at Panimoravintola Koulu, Finland’s largest brewery/restaurant, if you’d like. The remainder of the day is at leisure. You can head to Turku Castle for a guided tour, or there are several self-guided walks that have been put together by the tourist board with different focuses, such as art, museums, or architecture that could be of interest to you this afternoon. Overnight at Scandic Palace Hotel

Thursday, August 27Turku – Tampere | Meals: B D

We will drive from Turku to Tampere today. The drive is two hours, and we will make a brief stop in Paimio to visit Max’s old school and Paimio Sanatorium. Paimio Sanatorium was designed by Finnish architect Alvar Aalto. The building was completed in 1933 and used as a tuberculosis sanatorium until the early 1960s. Today, it is the Turku University Hospital. Along the way we will also stop for lunch in Nokia, an industrial city. Arriving in Tampere mid-afternoon, we’ll have some time at leisure before enjoying dinner together this evening. If you’d like, Teemu will lead an informal walking tour around the city to show you some sights he recommends seeing, including Tampere Market Hall (largest indoor market hall in the Nordic countries), and the Lenin Museum, which tells about the history that Finland and Soviet Union share. It is located where, in 1905, Lenin and Stalin met for the first time in a Bolsheviks’ secret meeting to plan the Russian Revolution. Overnight at Scandic Tampere City

Friday, August 28Tampere – Porvoo | Meals: B D

This morning is at your leisure in Tampere. Tampere is an old textile city so you can check out the design district. It also has a Market Hall where you can purchase the local specialty, black sausage, or you can go to Pyynikki Doughnut for some of the world’s best doughnuts. Tampere is also known as the sauna capital, so you can check out one of the public saunas. This afternoon we will depart for Porvoo, the second oldest city in Finland. This is a two-hour drive. For our final evening in Finland we will enjoy a walking dinner tour through Porvoo. During the tour we will stroll around the city, enjoying food at different restaurants while we see the sights and learn the history of the area. Porvoo is one of the six Medieval towns in Finland and known for its well-preserved buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries. Overnight at Hotelli Seurahovi

Saturday, August 29Depart Porvoo, Finland | Meals: B

Breakfast at the hotel. At 12:00 p.m. we will depart from the hotel en route to the airport in combination with our flight, taking the many memories we have made home with us. Departure from Helsinki to Reykjavik is at 3:05 p.m. After transferring planes in Reykjavik, we arrive in Minneapolis at 6:05 p.m. – or extend your stay in Scandinavia!

  • Round trip, economy-class air on Icelandair from Minneapolis/St. Paul to Helsinki, including taxes and fees, checked bag, individual in-seat entertainment (movies, TV shows and music). Meals and snacks on board Icelandair are available for purchase.
  • Three nights’ accommodation in standard room at Hotel St. George in Helsinki
  • Walking tour of Helsinki with 24-hour Helsinki Card
  • Private coach from Helsinki to Turku, with mentioned entrances
  • Two nights’ accommodation in standard room at Scandic Plaza in Turku
  • Walking tour of Turku
  • Private coach from Turku to Tampere
  • One nights’ accommodation in standard room at Scandic Tampere City in Tampere
  • Private coach from Tampere to Porvoo
  • One nights’ accommodation in standard room at Hotelli Seurahovi in Porvoo
  • Walking Dinner Tour of Porvoo
  • Meals as indicated (B-Breakfast, L-Lunch, D-Dinner) including Welcome dinner, lunches on travel to Turku & Tampere, one dinner in both Turku & Tampere, dinner tour in Porvoo
  • Private coach transfer, Porvoo to Helsinki Airport
  • Host, Max Stevenson
  • Assistance of Borton Overseas staff member throughout itinerary
Not Included
  • Airline fees including meals, seat reservations, extra luggage costs
  • Travel insurance, recommended
  • Fees for passports
  • Transfers, sightseeing, activities, meals, and beverages not specified
  • Luggage handling at airports or hotels
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, spa services, internet, phone, etc.
  • No gratuities are expected
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